Movie Review – Ambulance (2019 AACTA Awards Short Film Competition)

TL;DR – A beautiful and haunting animation of the impact of a single day.    

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Review

Today we start our exploration of the 2019 AACTA Awards Short Film Competition by exploring Lylah D’Souza’s work Ambulance that is inspired by a true story that brings real weight to the narrative once you see it play out.

Ambulance is an animated short film that charts the story of one day in the Narrator’s (Lylah D’Souza) life. It is the perfect encapsulation of life because it is the juxtaposition of the serious and the ephemeral. It highlights the weird things that you remember on days of stress, something I can deeply connect with.

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TV Review – 7Seeds: Part 1 (セブンシーズ Sebun Shīzu)

TL;DR – This is an interesting premise and it is playing with some interesting themes, even if it doesn’t quite always come together.  

Score – 3 out of 5 stars

7Seeds. Image Credit: Netflix.

Review

In recent years Netflix has been starting to make a big push into the anime arena possible as a way of holding off some of its competitors. Well in the same week that Neon Genesis Evangelion finally made its way on to the streaming service we get an adaptation of one of the most famous manga series 7Seeds. Well, you have animation, set in a post-apocalyptic world, and add a growing mystery, well count me in.

So to set the scene, one day Natsu Iwashimizu (Nao Tōyama) wakes up in the middle of the ocean on a sinking ship. The last thing she remembers is having a big dinner of all her favourite things and then she wakes up all alone. But before she has a chance to process what is going on Mozu (Kazuhiko Inoue) is screaming for her to get into a life raft. The two of them, along with Arashi (Jun Fukuyama) and Semimaru (Katsuyuki Konishi) find themselves on an abandoned island filled with odd creatures and plants. Is there anyone coming to help them? Where are they? Is there anyone left? Well, the answer to that is a large no because a cataclysm has happened. Now from here, we will be looking at the season as a whole so there will be [SPOILERS] ahead.

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TV Review – gen:LOCK – The Pilot

TL;DR The Pilot combines a great story, with fascinating animation, and a voice cast that is here for it, so much fun to watch.

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

gen:LOCK – The Pilot. Image Credit: Rooster Teeth.

Review

A while back there was some mention of Michael B. Jordan staring in an animated mecha series from Rooster Teeth, and you have to believe that this immediately caught my attention. This of course was added to when we got the little hints as to what the series is going to be about and the sheer bonkers voice cast that was coming on board. Well, today we get to see the final product, and well it does not disappoint.

So to set the scene, in 2068 the world is a very different place with a totalitarian government The Union rising up and slowly taking over the world with their nano-tech. There are very few governments left to stop them and all attempts to find a diplomatic resolution have failed. As The Polity trains for the coming war, Julian Chase (Michael B. Jordan) and Miranda Worth (Dakota Fanning) take some time away from The Anvil, their base of operations, to visit Chase’ mum Roberta (Shari Belafonte) in Brooklyn, New York. However, they are not visiting in person but through VR Holograms. After the prerequisite embarrassing stories about Chase’s childhood, the pair leaves just as The Union start their main attack on New York. The team race to defend the city but sometimes the only option left is a sacrifice. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.

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Awards – The Films from 2018 That Showed Off the Wonderful Glory of Animation

The Films from 2018 That Showed Off the Wonderful Glory of Animation

Animation is a form of filmmaking that is often related to second-tier status, something just for kids. This is by both the organisations giving out the awards and also by the very guilds that are meant to be promoting their member’s work. However, they are not second-tier films, and in many ways, it is the animated films that are pushing the frontiers of filmmaking and what is possible, and they should be championed for the work that they do.     

Animated films can be hand drawn, stop/clay motion, computer generated, it does not matter, but all of them show amazing techniques of hundreds of artists that bring the work to life.

So without further ado, these are the animated films that showed us the glory of animation in 2018. Be warned that there may be some slight spoilers ahead for the films in question. 

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Movie Review – Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

TL;DR – A masterpiece in animation, in incorporating comics into film,and exploring all the emotions, a must watch.      

Score – 5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is a post-credit scene and the credits are a technicolour dream coat

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. Image Credit: Sony/Marvel

Review


When I first heard that they were going to do a new Spider-Man animated film outside of the MCU I honestly didn’t have a lot of hope. It felt like a plan of a company that is trying to scramble while not doing anything new with a property that had stagnated for years. Then they announced that the story was from Phil Lord, and that piqued my interest, and then that first trailer dropped and I knew instantly that I was going to have to eat my words. Now that I have seen the movie proper I can honestly say that this is not only one of the best films of the year, but it might be the best superhero film I have seen in a while. This has been a bumper year for Spider-Man with Infinity War, the Spider-Man video game from Insomniac Games, but Into the Spider-Verse is the crown achievement and I have never been so glad to be wrong.

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TV Review – Adventure Time: Come Along With Me

TL;DR – This is a beautiful end to a strong series, it might feel a bit rushed at times, but it packs an emotional punch and is one of the best series finales that I have seen

Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars

 

Adventure Time: Come Along With Me. Image Credit: Cartoon Network / Frederator

 

Review

I grew up in the 1990s and like any child of that era, I am deeply protective of our cartoons like Gargoyles, Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, X-Men, Captain Planet, Beast Wars, and more. I also found, like every generation before me and every generation from now on, that the next generation of animated shows from the 2000s never lived up to the same standard (spoiler alert it was because I was not a child anymore). However, for me and many other people, there was one show that was the exception to the rule, and that was Adventure Time. This was a short 15-minute show based in an absurd world of candy people, post-apocalyptic imagery, annoyed lemons, and lumpy space princesses. However, it was also a show that was beautifully animated, well written, a touchstone for a lot of people, and actually grew up with the people that watched them. For me, I loved the world building that happened mostly through visual cues, and writing that was both emotionally resonate but also didn’t treat the younger audience it was targeted at as being unintelligent like so many other children’s focused entertainment both past, present, and future has/will do. Unfortunately it got a bit hard to find the show in Australia and I was left to pick it up every time a DVD got released but a couple of months ago I found that Stan had the whole series and I binged about 3 seasons of episodes, to go to the end just in time to find out the next episode was to be its last. So today I being a look at the end of a phenomenon that for many are their first real TV show love, and boy what an ending it was.

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Movie Review – Mirai (Mirai no Mirai, 未来のミライ)

TL;DR – Mirai is a film that ricochets from one emotion to the next, from joy, to despair, from excitement, to an existential crisis, but at no point does it lose its heart, and that is such a tough act to get right.

Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Mirai. Image Credit: Studio Chizu/Madman

Review

Have you ever walking into a film with absolutely no idea what it was going to be about? No TV ads, no trailers, no opinion peaches, a complete blind experience. For me, it has only truly happened once with The Forbidden Kingdom. Well, today I have another entry for that list with Mirai. Not only did I have no idea what it was going to be about, I had no idea it was about to hit me in the feels in a very complex way.

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